Since Africa is now the fastest-growing economy in the world as reported by the African Development Bank in 2017, many businesses have become more interested in investing in the African markets. However, having between 1000 and 2000 languages spoken by its population, businesses should take into account addressing the linguistic diversity in the African continent when they decide to crack its markets.
When localizing your website for African countries, you have to realize that you will not be dealing with a sole culture. In fact, each African country has its own cultural identity. Thus, digging deeper into such cultures before you proceed with any of your multilingual marketing strategies is pivotal if you wish your business to succeed in African markets.
In this blog, we will shine a spotlight on the definition of website localization, its importance, and how to conduct it successfully in the African markets. Let’s dive into it.
What is Website Localization?
It is the adaptation of your website content to be linguistically and culturally appropriate for the target market. This includes the adjustment of your message, images, colors, and even videos to resonate with the needs of your target audiences.
What is the Importance of Website Localization?
According to CISION PRWeb, market research has revealed that around 75 % of consumers prefer to buy products in their native language, and 60% of them never buy from English-only websites. Therefore, speaking to your consumers in their native tongues is essential to win their trust and loyalty.
Although English, French, and Spanish are dominant languages in the African continent, the indigenous African languages are gaining wider importance and adding them to your website languages has become inevitable if you want to establish a solid presence in the African markets. Here are some of the key benefits of website localization:
Reaching a Larger Audience
When you tailor your website content to look appealing to the target readers, they will be more willing to navigate your website as they will feel that your content is natural and looks as if it is primarily made just for them. Customers need to feel welcome and respected. Sticking to your original language or one of the official languages in Africa such as English will not help you gain the number of customers you are planning to acquire.
Adapting your website content to meet the cultural needs of your target consumers will skyrocket your sales. Moreover, you will achieve a higher level of customer satisfaction and engagement since customers will find what they are looking for in your website easily when you lower the cultural barriers in your website. Hence, recommendations for your website will increase among customers bringing you a more diverse clientele.
Improving Brand Image
When you adapt your website to meet the peculiarities of the target audience, you will facilitate communication and enhance understanding. Hence, your brand image will be highly improved establishing a higher command of trust.
Now, we made it clear why website localization is important. But, how do you make the most of out of it in the African markets? Here are some super useful tips!
Localize for Each Country Individually
Each African country has its own culture, traditions, and preferences. Therefore, you have to localize for each country individually to avoid any pitfalls when penetrating African markets. For example, the number of the population using the internet varies from one country to another.
In some countries, poverty prevails to a greater degree and many people do not have internet access. Others witness a boom in the middle class, so you will find a huge usage of the internet there.
Thus, before proceeding with your localization process, study well the country you are planning to market in.
Decide the Language
African countries are known for their linguistic diversity. So, it is no surprise if you find one country with more than one language spoken such as South Africa where there are at least 11 official languages spoken in addition to other indigenous African languages.
While deciding the language, you have to look at the languages which are widely spoken by the most population. Addressing Africans in their mother tongues will help you establish a strong presence in the African markets.
Studying the Local Culture
Before localizing your website, you have to study the target culture by heart to know your target audience’s traditions, preferences, politics, and religion. It is very crucial to address the cultural nuances to attract your target African customers.
Relying on a Trusted Language Service Provider
To localize your website successfully, you have to partner with a trustworthy translation agency that is specialized in African languages to provide you with the highest-quality translation and localization services. Translators should be native speakers of the target African language to be able to address all the linguistic and cultural nuances.
Why Choose Afrolingo?
At Afrolingo, we have in-country and well-versed translation experts who do not just translate your website content, but adapt all the elements of your website to meet the cultural nuances of target markets. We provide localization services in a wider variety of fields such as electronics, engineering, agriculture, and education.